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Interim Report of the Internationalized Registration Data Working Group

Open: 15 November 2010
Closed: 13 January 2011 Extended to 14 March 2011

Explanation/Background: On 26 June 2009 the Board of Directors of the Internet Corporate for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) approved a resolution (2009.06.26.18) requesting that the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) and the Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC), in consultation with staff, convene an Internationalized Registration Data Working Group (IRD-WG) comprised of individuals with knowledge, expertise, and experience in these areas to study the feasibility and suitability of introducing display specifications to deal with the internationalization of registration data. 

The Board further directed the IRD-WG to solicit input from interested constituencies including country code top level domain (ccTLD) operators and the Country Code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO) during its discussions to ensure broad community input. Subsequently, the SSAC and the GNSO formed the IRD-WG.

This Interim Report of the IRD-WG summarizes the discussions of the IRD-WG to date, provides preliminary recommendations, and seeks input from the community on the following questions relating to internationalized registration data:

  1. Which of the four models described in Section 4 for internationalizing registration contact data is most appropriate, if any?  Are there other models the IRD-WG should consider?
  2. Which of the preliminary recommendations in Section 5, if any, are feasible?  Are there related recommendations the IRD-WG should consider?

The Interim Report provides the community with an opportunity to understand ongoing discussions relating to the internationalization of registration data and to provide valuable input to these discussions.

At the direction of the IRD-WG, staff will post this Interim Report for public comment for a period of no less than 60 days.

Document Links:

Interim Report of the ICANN Internationalized Registration Data Working Group:

The Process From Here:

At the end of this Public Comment Forum period, ICANN Staff will review the comments submitted and prepare a summary analysis of the various submissions for the IRD-WG to review and consider.

Deadline and How to Submit Comments:

At the direction of the IRD-WG, staff will post this Interim Report for public comment for a period of no less than 60 days beginning 15 November 2010 and ending 13 January 2011 14 March 2011.  The IRD-WG invites community comments on this document and, in particular, the questions provided above.

Staff member responsible: Julie Hedlund

Announcement | Comments | Summary/analysis of comments

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as""icann.org"" is not an IDN."